Packing light vs complicated travel plans
I was in Madrid in mid-October for a couple of days. That’s not a long time, so packing should be easy, right? Well, as it happens, it was a bit more complicated than you might think…
OK, let me explain: So, I flew in from Finland, with a stopover in Manchester. Now, changing planes is never a good idea, and changing planes in Manchester is a terrible idea. Especially if your starting point (Helsinki) and your final destination (Madrid) are both within the Schengen area but your stopover isn’t… So, to simplify matters and to speed up the process (and to make sure my luggage would not get lost in transit) I decided to travel with cabin luggage only.
Only, this isn’t the end of the story… You see, After Madrid, Professor M and I would be spending a day in London before we could get back (to our second) home in England. And then, after 2 nights in England, we would be going to Germany for the weekend. And back to England again, for one night. And then I would fly back to Finland on Monday evening…
A bit of a packing challenge, then…
Right, let’s start with the weather. So, it was quite cold in Helsinki, quite warm in Madrid, and something in between in London. And in Germany it was almost as cold as in Finland. What this means is that I would need two coats: one for cooler weather and one for Madrid.
OK, my cabin luggage can fit clothes for 4 days, sure. That’s Madrid and London sorted, then. And I can repack (for Germany) when we get back home (our second home in England, that is). I must have a coat suitable for cooler weather there… No? OK, it seems all my autumn clothes have mysteriously relocated to our home in Finland… Better pack a light-weight down jacket, then.
So, I would be wearing one coat, of course, and the other one would be packed. But still, this trip would require not just one but two coats that travel well… OK, if you want to see the other coat (i.e. the one I was wearing in cooler temperatures, see HERE).
Basically, what I packed (for Madrid) was just a variation of the minimalist travel wardrobe, built around (this time) two coats, two bags (one of them a folded canvas bag), and two pairs of shoes. Yes, it all fit very nicely into my cabin luggage and there was some room for shopping, too.
But what to wear in Madrid in October?
It’s important to dress in a way that is seasonally appropriate. In Madrid, the weather was fine, around 20 °C / 68 °F by day, a bit cooler by night. Well, for me, as a Finn, these are summer temperatures, more or less…
The locals were wearing their autumn coats and heavier shoes, of course, and I didn’t want to stand out too much, i.e. wear anything that screams tourist. Easier said than done when the weather reminds you of early summer… Anyway, I thought I should at least wear a coat. But I just can’t make myself wear a puffa jacket / wool coat when the temperature is still in double digits, so I needed to pack a trench coat. And I must confess, for the most part I ended up carrying the trench folded over my arm instead of wearing it. It was just way too warm…
As I’ve been wearing autumn coats and warmer clothes for weeks in Finland already, flirting with a bit more summery attire was actually quite nice. I also thought this trip would be the perfect opportunity to wear my red suede ballerinas one last time before I store them for winter.
Hmm, I think I said my goal was to avoid looking like a tourist…
Anyway, this is the first of the two outfits built around the blue trench coat, the red tote bag, the leopard print sunglasses and the red shoes. You’ll see the other one next week.
trench: Hobbs (old) / jeans: Next (old) / shirt: Marks and Spencer /
bag: Furla / shoes: Clarks / sunglasses: Dolce and Gabbana
Do you find it difficult to adjust your style to different climates?
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